but we are only talking a few months. this new regime in north korea has only been in power for a few months. in the broader scope of history, there have been many changes in the regimes that have lasted months and years before something major has happened in terms of change. so i think that the verdict is still out on this. i don't think that we can simply assume that everything will go smoothly and that they will be able to muddle through for a bit. prior to the death of kim jong-il in december 2011, if you ask any expert, including you, what would be the most important variable that can create major change in this country? i think everyone would've agreed the sudden death of the north korean leader. i think we have to respect what we thought before. and i think we all have to watch very carefully what is going to happen. the future of this regime is not
historian, president emeritus of dartmouth college and a marine. i and the director emeritus of the memorial association board of directors. first a few quick words of the non-profit federal organization chartered to commemorate the valor of members of the united states armed forces killed lost or died in military service for broke above the list of duties for the marine memorial association we are responsible for maintaining the extraordinary club -- club as a memorial
will be post during the second half of the program. it is by a pleasure to introduce dr. right to the said of world war ii veteran. he is from believe the illinois near dubuque diyala and the college resolute knew i was with james wright i graduated with this list of margins. [laughter] he would roll over in his grave.
you went to the university of wisconsin and became a history professor 1969. served as the president 1998 through 2009 and he has visited most of the military hospitals and has a courage support for the wounded veterans in those hospitals. is a director of the board of the injured marine december 5 fund one of the top 10 charities rated by a the navigator. he has written for the "christian science monitor", npr and recognized by the education field as
one of the four most spokespeople for our young veterans today. please join me to welcome dr. james wright. [applause] >> thank you. it is an honor to be introduced bayou. i haven't mired your work with the california state university system. you and the chancellor are models to make opportunities for veterans. last friday i was of a raid officer for boot camp i finished boot camp 1957.
i have bedroll instructor who would rollover it his grave the new i was the parade reviewing officer. i would be happy to see him rollover. [laughter] i am unthinkable to speak here. i served with the general on the board. i admire him for his service for the country is day energetic figure who does make a difference. also to my friends in the bay area for publicizing my visit and joining us.
san princess go is a special place i have spoke period a number of times. i shipped out of treasure island 1958. we were there preparing. i went to the cape and then discharged 52 years ago 1968. but surely informed by my a experience to be right things from our experience. i grew up in illinois of good general grant hometown.
of the battle in fallujah and i spoke to a friend to encourage me to go to the hospital. to talk to marines there. i was there between 25 and 30 times over the last several years. i walk the floor and talk bet to bet. hearing how they are insured by could reflect on all 300 kids i have spoken to. this led me to other involvement when they promote the post 9/11 g.i.
bill. we developed the basic principle of the program that is an important part of the gi bill. for the jefferson n lecturer of berkeley i thought i would pick up a book or to. nice started to complain the friend said quit complaining and ride it yourself. there has been a re-emergence into american history by have been away
for some 20 years while administration but it allowed me to become reimbursed. is a subject of america's wars is said narrative but the meditation reflection and i have observations so major themes is the idea of these citizens soldier the concept americans will leave their shops when the republic was threatened and as soon as it was over they would hurry home because they are not professional soldiers. said declining value is the
description since world war ii sent those far less representative. the military was less and less representative because of exemptions then today with the all volunteer army. washington believes of americans need to serve with the militia that we need to contribute to support those who served. he also recognized his experience was negative.
but then harvest bring crops to say he wanted full-time soldiers and he finally got them in the continental army. obligations is starkly from the beginning the contract of the republic fishery methane given in to those who are healthy that meant if you had your limbs you are healthy and should not expect any support from the government. we started to give pensions to overly veterans but then
the gs bill provided opportunities to go to school or take a business. hoover and could insisted no payment but even roosevelts said healthy veterans are not entitled to in the thain for simply doing their duty. reflecting on the composition of the military. there is a great fear the military is a force composed of the poor and the
with the war in vietnam with public opinion polls we do not blame those for fighting today. there is tremendous applause. in the understanding of what this on our behalf. the wars are mysterious, impersonal, very few news media covering the war and not a lot to cover. no major battles for several years.
methane to grab the front-pagfront-pag e headlines. there is no real understanding of day-by-day fighting against the yen clear enemy in the play last year, and on broadway one so frustrated said we're the only one did you inform. how do we know who to fight? last summer at the bethesda hospital following the spring and summer battles in afghanistan in late july 45
for suffering. one was injured by a mortar round. stem from a gunshot round 41 by explosives. then the saw the person that detonated the explosives. if it did say defensive sort of four. actually met the young marine who was it the fire fight. again is quite different. where saving more casualties. about 10% in afghanistan and
iraq have died. vietnam's was 1/3. it has less to do with the number of factors of the armor, the helmets helmets, battlefield but it's -- mitt said and medevac to get to the kid out within 30 minutes. also explosives but the gunshot wounds far more lethal and carefully placed. there is a higher rate to of death from the gunshot wound. we have new types of
injuries and a lot of amputations. it is commonplace to see somebody missing ll due to an explosion. more face and head injuries. one of the most poignant feigns was to show me a new board of the hospital and people suffering from head injuries and in all of the bathrooms there were no mirrors because they did not want to anybody to see their reflection without help. and is said different sort of four. a greater incidence of ptsd now we are better to
diagnose and the head now will restarted basically eight to merge nine years after the troops pulled out. the other wars, not at all but we also understand while traumatic brain injury the military and the national football league discover this at the same time is now longer something to shrug off. might take away is to remember the human case of war. i know there is anything more human nothing fundamentally more human. we have to reflect what we
ask these young bet and women to do. one is to avoid a debt situation is better dangerous and the american is don't harm other people. their spiritual and religious ends to assure against harming other people and these 18 and 19 year-old's we say forget the two rules and put yourself at risk revealing the and we prepared to harm other people. then they come home and we say forget the use.
one does not forget easily. to summarize the human face of war late in the afternoon 1951 soldier huddled in a foxhole. his unit to had just arrived reassigned from their duty in japan. when the bazooka team fired they opened with a machine gun and the man why is this shot dead. the men took his body. you was the first announced servicemen killed in the korean war. of front-line correspondent
from world were to and leaving the tokyo office to go with the troops. this dead soldier had a look of surprise on his face "the prospect of death seemed assets in real to the private as the war seemed to be. he was the long bandied this build made him look far younger. the medic said what of place to die. "the new york times" sens the diocese in a foxhole. in west virginia his parents learned of his death that morning at breakfast when neighbors said they heard it on the radio. his mom was devastated by the death of one of
potential brand. his father later talked to reporters and described him as sad and resigned. he was the best and never caused us worry. the sender permission to join as 17 when asked what he thought about his assignment he was fighting against some kind of government. he said he did know where career was the place where his boy was killed. this would be repeated 37,000 times we ask me ask the youngsters to do things
that many of us do not understand. one young marine talked about being on a patrol taking fire from a farm house they started a fire fight and he noticed a young boy was frightened and ran down and was in the crossfire. the people retreated out the back or were killed and the marine landover to the boy and he realized he was dying and he held him and the sergeant said it this time to go. we have to go. he said that was so torn
because my unit did need to get out to and i needed to be there but i thought i don't want this boy to die without another human being so low he finally died i put to him down and ran back and the searches that i will court-martial you. fortunately they did not. he was right to. it was my application but this is the most human of a thing to do and what a choice to make a 19 year-old
do that decision. their remarkably professional. talk about everyone being a hero, courageous, remarkable , brave. this goes back to abraham lincoln and going back to the battlefield when he spoke no names or exploit soar battle accounts but the eulogy for all who sacrificed and we continue to lou talked-about he rose all. there is little room to understand the cost of four it we have to recognize
there is a cost of four lyonnais to step up. we hear about the 1% and the 99% the privileged and the rest who pay the bills. there's also the 99% and 1% ratio 1% of the population serves in the military today. 1% of our families of sons or daughters and 99% are not sacrificing. we are unaware of what they
do. this has been the first sustained war with no attacks to pay for it to. we had tax cuts at the outset nobody dares talk about it today. i wrote some of brawl senators in congress to say maybe it is time to have a surtax on individual to pay for the 04 rather than have them come back to say you have to pay for it to. nobody even answered by a letter. taxes are the third rail.
i am not sure it could not be approved but that is the nature of war today. i have tried to understand this. my interest is having the biggest lectern i could have to talk a out the issues that are important. there is a history lesson, civics lesson the way of a democracy to organize itself and the sacrifices we ask our citizens. i am delighted to be here tonight and will be happy to answer your questions.
[applause] >> i ain't i a speak for all of us but thank you for your tremendous capturing of the essence of what the young military man and woman faces today and the world that they come back to. the first question that you talk about the veterans are portrayed as a victims'. what can we do as a society to take that off of their description? >> be a non veterans are considered victims i think
simplicity people who want to engage the military forces they yet not to holy fund active duty forces. they have repeated deployments that are not designed for continuous or repeated tour. >> i will not get into the duplicity but that is true. we did not mobilize a force sufficient for the decade because nobody predicted how long the '04 would take. they did not make of the
cost there should have been more marines rather than ask these people to have deployments five 4/6 times. i don't think anyone could go a380 combat zone as many time as we ask the you see own people without suffering consequences. 56% are married the levying family is behind. i think it is a tremendous burden. >> several questions have come with the increasing role of contract employees. your o'quinn and lowered thought this how this impacts the military? i was at camp pendleton.
what about the mess hall? what have been to my marine corps. i was on mess duty all the time. [laughter] i did scholar eight and i have done it all. it is good they are not asked that now. with those who are on guard duty i don't know if there is too much but to they can relieve the military that is good bet to way can account for that. the numbers of people have been significant only with
open to counseling as five said there is nothing harder for the 22 or 23 year-old man who has served to say i am scared. i am apprehensive. you have to be willing to do that. finally said the day expand did mental-health counselors to provide support more quickly there morrice suicides and from our act and afghanistan and good chief of staff and tried to
break through this that is somebody says i am apprehensive for concerned you don't, don't be a sissy. go forward. my talk to a young man who was supposed to go back to iraq and was identified ptsd and his sergeant yelled at him. he was over three times. 1/2 to get down to the ranks to make a difference. people try to follow orders is harder to break through. >> there are questions on
the all volunteer force. strength in the country more cost is a weakness in? >> as i suggested it is not representative. people say let's al abizaid draft. i did not urge the draft. i think the military does have a professional force they would rather have people who have been listed but in 2010 there were 4.4 million 18 year-old's and that year they commission
and 165,001 is less than 4% that signed up. we could hope will wade to the lottery but what 4% and most would say you might as well as how somebody who prefers to be there and certainly those in his command wishes he was not there. is not an arizona answer. we have to understand who they are and what we ask them to do. people say we needed draft because those people would
be more cautious in their kids could be called the. i refuse to except that. if people of washington could be sensitive to send americans off to war but to be in different otherwise then they should not be in washington. people should not function this way in public office. >> would you make comments regarding nathaniel thick and his book? >> he is a good friend of recent years and i was with him a couple years ago. is a great example with a
classics major at dartmouth and his unit was involved in afghanistan then the and asian end of iraq. the hbo film dealt with his unit to and once they got to baghdad you wanted to take the platoon down to babylon to see the ancient ruins although he said a few years later were few months later he could not have done that unless the heavy armored escort but there was the brief window to do that. he is coming on the board of trustees. a remarkable young man. >> speaking to the transition program in the
military. we go through boot camp win 12 weeks are take 10 to transform man or woman into military person but no process to help them when they accept the service. your comments on a transition program? >> this day good observation. i know of they try to do more at the end major installations but to what is required is good personal counseling. young veterans have a higher
unemployment rate they have more homelessness. we need to do better and finally that is with individual support you have to understand where the problems are. i worry about counseling for the injured veterans. if you bring a young soldier to a ballgame at at&t park there is a standing ovation but to the music will stop. the last world war i veteran
just died these will be 21 '05. fade deserve to be better than words of the state. we need to encourage them to enlarge their own dreams. this can be done but it will take time and effort. it is that personal touch they are so overwhelmed by the numbers. >> in the past we had john wayne, and others who made major impacts on the military through the movie industry. ballet have the act of valor
and other hurt locker. europay and? >> i think they show some of the experiences of people in the field. there are fewer heroes. 10 or 11 medals of honor. but murphy could hit the machine gun nest. john wayne could pretend to hit the beach at you would you the. there are no opportunities in these wars for that traditional concept. we try to make jessica lynch or pat tillman and make
traditional heroes out of them. khomeini of god to people who survive primarily for saving someone's life to jump on a hand grenade to save others. we don't know how to handle the war but everyone who steps out of the gate is being heroic the. >> in the past conflicts this of william leadership had military experience. today it is shrinking to the
microscopic level to those who have served how does that impact the decisions made for the military force? >> that is interesting. congress has of far lower percentage it has declined significantly. this is not to a good thing but the inclination and the people of congress to say i will vote for it to. my thinking in aid to have some more lance corporals. somebody in the military
might not want to ask tough questions. last several it elections a war hero and george bush ii national guard he beat al gore and mccain was defeated by a obama. i don't think that this not put people over the top been a more. with less than 1% we have to recognize there is a smaller percentage and we have to
>> ien emma kraft being of the citizens of london that came out a couple years ago. the history of london during the war and edward r. murrow reporting back to the united states was strongly held views to get to into the war. with our foreign aid program for england to the ambassador had replaced joseph kennedy's father who
was partial to the germans which is why roosevelts likely brought him home. it is a book of their interaction with churchill and aggressive advocacy of the united states to break out of the isolationist mood and the author also wrote a book called trouble some young men about the members of parliament rallying behind churchill and orchestrated the rise to the prime minister's job when double chamberlain fell. i n interested in reading them back to back and is a